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Some tips for Tipping in Egypt

What’s the Tipping or Baksheesh in Egypt?

Tipping in Egypt is called Baksheesh and is a common custom and expected by people because tipping demonstrates an expression of satisfaction and gratitude to people who provide some service.

In Arab culture, and especially in Egypt, tipping is an important cultural part. For those who aren’t used to it, constant requests for tips can be annoying, but it’s important to stay calm and understand that it’s part of everyday life in Egypt.

Tipping in Egypt is an expression of your appreciation or gratitude for the efforts of the people who offer your services. Tipping is expected in many service sectors in Egypt and local tourist sites. It depends on your rating for the services presented. Prices in Egypt are low compared to other tourist destinations in the world, so tipping is allowed and welcomed by many working in the service sector. Some Egyptians consider it a good way to thank or show gratitude or appreciation to the person who has offered you a particular service.

When you travel to Egypt, it is best to understand that tipping is an important element during your trip. Tipping is popular in some tourist destinations, but it is widespread throughout Egypt. On the other hand, it is a way of life to increase the income of low-wage people and is expected, for example, for a waiter after eating in a restaurant, after asking the bill for a drink in a cafe or bar, for a luggage carrier or trunk who carries or delivers your bags to your room on a hotel or cruise, to a waiter who brings food to your room, etc.

How to tip in Egypt?

  • Exchange some of your money for the local currency (Egyptian Pounds) as the Egyptians prefer local money.
  • Always keep Egyptian pounds in your pocket, 1, 5, and 10 pounds as you will need them again and again.
  • If you are unable to exchange currency, it is preferable to use US Dollars as it is more acceptable than other currencies.
  • You must tip after receiving the service; like after receiving your bags in a hotel or cruise room.
  • On the Nile Cruise, the tip is collectively tipped on the last night of the cruise journey, before Check-out in an envelope for the receptionist or in the tip box dedicated for this, and don’t forget
  • to write the cabin number on the envelope.
  • It’s considered polite of you to discreetly insist on the person who declines a tip once or twice.
  • You don’t need to give tips for everyone to ask you. If the service was good or deserving, you can tip according to your rating or satisfaction. If the service was good, you can tip appropriately.
  • If you don’t like the service, you don’t need to tip.

Remember that Egypt has many vendors trying to sell you stuff, so if you don’t want to buy it, don’t be afraid to say “ La Shukran ” (meaning No thanks!) to avoid them.

However, Egypt is a good place to visit with cheap prices, so tipping will not negatively affect your trip to Egypt.

Important notes:

  • Tipping exists in Egypt, but it is not mandatory, although it is expected.
  • The restaurant charges the service fee on the invoice, which is currently 12% in Egypt, you are not asked to pay a tip on top of the invoice.
  • Ask your Guide about the value of tips for services you think to deserve a tip.

Tipping in Egypt

How much should you tip in Egypt?

Tipping can have a significant impact on your travel experience in Egypt. Do not hesitate to give generous tips; in return, you will be sure to receive attentive treatment. Below is a list of common situations where it is advisable to tip, with an appropriate amount.

  • Restaurant: it is usual to leave between 5 and 10% of the amount of the tip, in addition to the service charges included. If you smoke shisha, don’t hesitate to give 5 Egyptian pounds to the waiter who brings you the embers.
  • Hotel: Normally, $ 1-3 is usually left with the doorman and other employees
  • Bags: for hotel bags, I suggest giving between 10 or 20 Egyptian pounds.
  • Tour Guide and Driver: A common tip for the Tour Guide is $30 to $50 per person for the entire trip and for the Driver US$10 to $20.
  • Guardians (WC …): An amount of 5 Egyptian pounds is appropriate
  • Guardians on archaeological sites: 10 Egyptian pounds are appropriate for a particular extra service. The tip is only to be given if you have formulated your agreement and accepted or requested this service.

Baksheesh in Egypt

When not to tip?

When not to tip?

In general, the decision to tip is entirely up to you. If you feel that exchanging money in a given situation is inappropriate or if someone urges you to pay, then do not hesitate to refuse. Below are some situations where tipping is not necessary or appropriate:

  • In exchange for information on a department or in response to any request for information. You will likely meet people who will refuse any money for helping you find your way. This is Egyptian hospitality.
  • If someone asks you to pay for something you didn’t ask for.
  • In a taxi, watch the meter and refuse if the driver asks for more. If there is no meter, agree on a price before boarding the car.

We hope this guide will answer some of your questions about Tipping in Egypt. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have further questions on this subject. The most important thing is that you enjoy every moment in Egypt!


About the author

Magdy Fattouh (Migo) is a creative content marketer and expert in search engines for over 5 years. He manifests his passion in his role as a Creative Content Writer especially in travel where he strives to evoke a strong sense of place in his write-ups.

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